A tale of two gun charge cases – Boston Herald

If anyone deserves the Jack Jones treatment it is Dean Tran.

Remember him? He is the former Fitchburg Republican state senator who was indicted by then-Attorney General Maura Healey, now governor, on a questionable gun charge. Tran has pleaded not guilty.

Jones, of course, is the 25-year-old, $4.4 million New England Patriot cornerback who walked last week after Suffolk County District Attorney Kevin Hayden dropped all serious gun charges against him,

In Tran’s case, Healey, running for governor in 2022, drudged up a three-and-a-half-year-old disputed gun theft case against him.

Tran at the time was running against Democrat U.S. Rep Lori Trahan of Westford, a Healey supporter, in the Lowell centered 3rd Congressional District.

The indictment, the only such indictment Healey sought in the eight years she was attorney general, came after Trahan endorsed Healey in the Democrat gubernatorial primary for governor.

Trahan not only twice contributed $1,000 to Healey but raised an additional $30,000 to $50,000 for Healey’s gubernatorial campaign.

Healey, during the congressional campaign charged Dean Tran, a Vietnamese American, with the alleged theft of a firearm from an elderly constituent who previously asked for his help in disposing of her late husband’s catch of weapons. Tran denied the charge and returned the weapon.

The Fitchburg Police Department investigated and found no wrongdoing and the Worcester District Attorney Office, which had jurisdiction, never even took the case up.

Someone bought it to Healey’s attention three years later and Healey, helping out her friend Trahan, swooped in and destroyed what chance, little that it was, of Tran defeating Trahan in the 2022 election.

What Healey did back then smelled, and it still smells today

Yet despite the indictment, Republican Tran, a Donald Trump supporter, was able to gather 36.4% of the vote (88,585) to 63.5% (154,492) for incumbent Democrat Trahan in the heavily Democrat district.

Trahan said she knew nothing about the indictment or how it came about.

Rather than drop the flimsy case — and halt the wreckage of Tran’s life — attorneys from Attorney General Andrea Campbell’s office sought to send Tran, a Vietnamese American, to prison for a year on a rejected plea deal during a court appearance last week in Worcester Superior Court. Campbell is Haley’s handpicked successor.

A more fitting action would have been for Campbell to investigate what prompted Healey to resurrect a dead legal case to go after Tran in the first place.

But don’t hold your breath. Dean is a Trump Republican and justice, such as it is, is controlled by Democrats. Democrats do not investigate Democrats.

Besides, Democrats not only want to defeat Republicans, like Trump and Trump supporter Dean Tran, they want to destroy them.

It is just too bad Tran does not play for the Patriots and have all the connections working for him that Jones had. If he did, Healey would never have indicted him in the first place.

Jones was arrested in June at Logan Airport after security discovered two loaded semi-automatic firearms in his carry-on bag, a Glock 43X and a Glock 19 along with 54 rounds of ammunition,

It is not as though Jones planned to use one or another of the Glock’s on an opposing stand up quarterback or a speedy wide receiver, he just did not know they were in his bag, or so he said. Really?

What’s the big deal? Everybody walks around packing two guns, don’t they?  Especially in the NFL.

As far-fetched as it seemed, Hayden and the state bought into the, “I did not know I was carrying two loaded guns ready to board an airplane” defense and Jones walked. He did not even have to say that a stranger handed him the bag.

Assistant District Attorney John Blazos, who “prosecuted” the case, wrote, “it cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt that Mr. Jones had knowledge that he possessed the firearms in his bag at the time of the incident.”

It also cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt that justice is fair and balanced in Massachusetts. Like Jones, it’s in the bag.

Peter Lucas is a veteran Massachusetts political reporter and columnist.

Gov. Maura Healey (Stuart Cahill/Boston Herald, file)
Gov. Maura Healey (Stuart Cahill/Boston Herald, file)

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